You and your significant other both control a lot of assets. You're in your 40s, getting married for the second time, and you've been through divorce before. You know what it means emotionally, financially and legally.
What you want is to prevent a mess if your second marriage falls apart like the first one did. You're thinking of asking your significant other if you should use a prenuptial agreement. After all, you think you could both benefit.
When you find yourself in this situation, know that there are five common mistakes people just like you tend to make. To help you avoid them, they're listed below.
1. Agreeing when you don't agree.
The prenup is binding. Don't sign one that you don't actually agree with. Don't do it just to appease your partner. Don't do it just to put the conversation to bed. Work on the details until you actually want to sign.
2. Refusing to ask.
Maybe you're not sure your significant other is open to a prenup. You're worried that asking for one will lead to a fight or even break up the relationship. You think it's awkward, not romantic. That makes sense, but don't refuse to bring it up out of fear. What if he or she is thinking the exact same thing and is also nervous to talk about it?
3. Not being honest about money.
You may feel like money is a personal topic. You may not like telling people how much you have or what you make. If you're drafting a prenup, though, you have to be open and honest. So does your soon-to-be spouse. It's the only way that the agreement will fit your life.
4. Negotiating based on emotion.
Emotions often get in the way of rational thinking, which is what you must have when talking about assets, money, property and everything else. Don't make emotional decisions out of anger or out of love. Concentrate on what is fair, rational and what really gives you the protection you need.
5. Letting it ruin your happiness.
You just got engaged. It's supposed to be happy and exciting. The prenup does not have to take away from that. Get it drafted, get it signed and get it out of sight. File it and forget about it. Don't let it make your new relationship feel business-like or sterile. It's a useful tool to use, but it does not define you.
Ready to set up that prenup? Remember that you should do it well before the wedding so it doesn't look like either party was rushed or under duress. Make sure you know what legal steps to take and when you need to take them.